The Lake

Lake Nantahala

With just 30 miles of shoreline and at an elevation above 3,000 feet, Lake Nantahala is a quiet, pristine oasis at the edge of the Nantahala National Forest, surrounded by the rustic beauty of the Blue Ridge and Smoky Mountains.

Lake Nantahala was formed in 1942 when the Nantahala River was dammed to create a pure, crystal clear reservoir. The shoreline has a limited number of private homes and cabins, as much of the area is owned and managed by the U.S. Forest Service and the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission. Below the lake, the river tumbles down the mountainside in spectacular cascades and waterfalls, providing water for trout fishing, world-class river rafting and kayaking on the Nantahala River.